25 Bible Verses about Humility + commentary

When we explore what the Bible says about humility, we’re diving into a fundamental aspect that touches the core of our spiritual walk and relationship with God. Humility is more than just modesty or a low view of one’s importance; it is a posture of the heart that acknowledges our dependence on God and values others above ourselves.

“The uncommon virtue of humility is the disposition of the heart to be pleased with the infinite superiority of Christ over ourselves in every way.” 

Dr. John Piper, The Uncommon Virtue of Humility

The scriptures are rich with teachings and examples of humility, guiding us on how to embody this virtue in our lives. As we delve into the word of God, we find that humility is not just recommended; it’s celebrated and commanded, serving as the bedrock for how we are to interact with God and those around us.

Bible Verses About Humility

Philippians 2:3-4

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”

This passage from Philippians exhorts us to put aside our selfish motives and conceit, embracing a life where we consider others more significant than ourselves. It challenges us to look beyond our desires and to take an active interest in the well-being of others, embodying the humility Christ showed.

James 4:6

“But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: ‘God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.'”

James reminds us of the promise that God bestows grace upon the humble while opposing the proud. This verse encourages us to live in humility, ensuring we’re in a position to receive God’s grace rather than resistance.

Proverbs 22:4

“By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches, and honor, and life.”

Proverbs links humility with the fear of the Lord as a pathway to true riches, honor, and life. This wisdom literature teaches us that humility isn’t just a moral virtue but a spiritual principle that leads to abundant blessings.

Matthew 23:12

“Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.”

Jesus’ teaching in Matthew highlights the kingdom principle of reversal where the world’s norms are turned upside down. He assures us that humility is the path to true exaltation, not self-promotion.

1 Peter 5:5-6

“Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.’ Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you.”

Peter calls for mutual humility among believers, emphasizing that God’s grace is reserved for the humble. This exhortation to humility is not just for the young or the less experienced but is a universal call to all believers, promising God’s exaltation in due time.

Proverbs 11:2

“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.”

This proverb teaches us that pride often leads to our downfall, while humility is the path to wisdom. It contrasts the outcomes of pride and humility, guiding us to choose the latter.

“As long as you are proud you cannot know God. A proud man is always looking down on things and people: and, of course, as long as you are looking down, you cannot see something that is above you.”

C.S. Lewis

Colossians 3:12

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.”

Paul’s letter to the Colossians outlines the virtues that should characterize the life of believers, including humility. This verse not only calls us to be humble but to also embody compassion, kindness, gentleness, and patience.

Micah 6:8

“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”

Micah succinctly summarizes the requirements of a life pleasing to God: justice, mercy, and humility. Walking humbly with God is not just an act of piety but a comprehensive approach to life that includes fairness and compassion.

Luke 14:11

“For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

Echoing the teachings found in Matthew, Luke reinforces the idea that the way to true honor is not through self-promotion but through humility. This verse underscores the paradoxical truth that in God’s kingdom, the way up is down.

Psalm 25:9

“He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.”

This Psalm assures us that God provides guidance and instruction to those who walk in humility. It is a promise that humility opens the door to divine direction and learning God’s ways.

2 Chronicles 7:14

“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

This verse from Chronicles is a call to humility and repentance, linking them to divine forgiveness and healing. It highlights the power of humility to bring about spiritual renewal and restoration.

Proverbs 18:12

“Before destruction a man’s heart is haughty, but humility comes before honor.”

Similar to other proverbs, this verse warns against the dangers of pride and the value of humility as a precursor to honor. It serves as a reminder of the inevitable downfall that pride can lead to.

Matthew 5:5

“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.”

Part of the Beatitudes, this verse pronounces a blessing on the meek, equating meekness with humility. Jesus promises that the humble will receive the ultimate inheritance, showcasing the kingdom value placed on humility.

Isaiah 66:2

“This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word.”

Isaiah reveals God’s admiration for the humble, portraying humility as a trait that God highly values. This verse calls us to a humility that respects and reveres God’s word.

1 Samuel 2:8

“He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap; he seats them with princes and with the heirs of a throne of honor. For the foundations of the earth are the Lord’s; on them he has set the world.”

This verse from 1 Samuel illustrates God’s power to elevate the humble, showing how He can transform the lowly’s circumstances and honor them beyond their status. It reflects God’s justice and His prerogative to uplift the humble.

Ephesians 4:2

“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.”

Paul’s exhortation in Ephesians emphasizes the importance of humility in maintaining unity and love within the community of believers. It speaks to the role of humility in fostering patience and tolerance among us.

Zephaniah 2:3

“Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land, who do his commands; seek righteousness, seek humility; perhaps you may be hidden on the day of the Lord’s anger.”

This verse encourages the pursuit of humility as a means of protection and favor from God, especially in times of judgment. It underscores the importance of humility in the life of those who wish to follow God’s commands.

Romans 12:3

“For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.”

Paul’s letter to the Romans advises believers to have a realistic view of themselves, inspired by the humility that faith in God requires. This verse emphasizes the balance between self-awareness and the humility that comes from recognizing our place within God’s plan.

Romans 12:16

“Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.”

This passage advises believers to seek harmony and avoid pride. It specifically calls for openness to relationships with people from all walks of life, highlighting humility as a key factor in fostering unity and inclusivity within the Christian community.

Galatians 6:14

“May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”

Paul’s declaration in Galatians emphasizes humility through the lens of the cross, suggesting that our only boast should be in Jesus Christ and his sacrificial love. This perspective shifts the focus from personal achievements to the glory of God.

Psalm 149:4

“For the Lord takes pleasure in his people; he adorns the humble with salvation.”

This Psalm reassures us that God delights in His people, especially in those who carry a humble spirit. It promises that humility is not only pleasing to God but also a path to salvation, highlighting the value God places on this trait.

Proverbs 3:34

“He mocks proud mockers but shows favor to the humble and oppressed.”

Echoing the sentiments found in the New Testament, this Proverb speaks to God’s justice and how He responds to pride versus humility. It assures us that God’s favor rests upon the humble, providing a stark contrast to His reaction to the proud.

Proverbs 15:33

“The fear of the Lord is instruction in wisdom, and humility comes before honor.”

This verse links the fear of the Lord with the pursuit of wisdom, positioning humility as a prerequisite for honor. It teaches us that true honor and wisdom are attained not through self-promotion but through a humble and reverent relationship with God.

Final Thoughts about Humility in the Bible

The Bible consistently teaches that humility is not a sign of weakness but of strength. It’s a divine principle that shapes our character, relationships, and the way we approach God. Through humility, we open ourselves to God’s guidance, grace, and blessings. It’s a virtue that transforms us and aligns us more closely with the heart of God.

“The truly humble person does not expect to find virtue in himself, and when he finds none he is not disappointed. He knows that any good deed he may do is the result of God’s working within him.”

A.W. Tozer

As we reflect on the biblical teachings about humility, here are a few questions to consider:

  • How can I practice humility in my daily interactions with others?
  • In what areas of my life do I need to seek God’s guidance to cultivate a more humble spirit?
  • How does humility impact my relationship with God and those around me?

Let these scriptures and thoughts about humility marinate in your heart as you seek to live out this essential biblical principle in your life.